Exclusive shops where only the rich, privileged and powerful people patronize stricltly on invitation and appointment berthes in Abuja
From UBONG UKPONG, Abuja
Monday, April 04, 2011
Class dichotomy is fast becoming very evident by the day in Abuja, the nation?s capital. This is obvious in the startling and rapid emergence of exclusive shops where only the rich, privileged and the powerful are allowed to patronize strictly on invitation and appointment.
These shops, which are separately and discretely sited in exclusive areas too, like Maitama, Asokoro and Wuse II were discovered to be of international standards, very expensive too close to their counterparts overseas.
Daily Sun was in one of such shops at Maitama.
It is a fashion house, dealing specifically on Italian wares and the operators said that the fashion house was a replica of those in Italy. It was actually on a night of ?Fashion View?, by Di Constantino Clothing Hall, owners and operators of the exclusive fashion house, and Daily Sun was conducted around the various stores within the clothing hall, which separately house assorted clothes, shoes, jewelries, amongst others.
Mr Eric Oloyo, Manager, Di Constantino Clothing Hall, said all products were imported and that every store had different products, with male stores different from that of the female: ?We specialize in Italian products. Whatever is fashion in Italy, we have them in our stores.?
He said that this has provided a market closer to the rich class in the country to save them the costs and trouble of having to travel abroad always to buy, as well as plunging back the money into the nation?s economy. Insisting that decency and quality service delivery were the hallmark of the clothing hall, Oloyo stressed that ?it is a must that you make a call, then we?ll now be expecting you to come here to buy something. Anybody cannot just walk in here like that.
?Actually, if we make it a place where anybody can come, you know, some people will just come here check on the types of products that we have here but they cannot meet up to buy the kind of products we?re having. They will be thinking that it is the type of products that other people are having outside that we have here, but when they come here they find it difficult that it is the type of thing they cannot purchase then this place will later become like a general market place, that is why we make it a system that some standard people will call us before they come. We wait for them to come and buy what they want to buy.
?Our MD is based outside the country. It?s a type of business that he has been into for quite sometime. That?s why he came to this place and established according to his experience in Italy. The same system is what he is operating here. That?s why the system is different from what other people are operating outside here.?
Asked if there are no rooms for the poor to partake: ?Yes, we can actually put it in that way for the fact that the products we are having here are authentic. They are not the types you buy outside that you will be expecting that you will get in this place. You can come to this place then you will be expecting that what you?ve been buying outside is the same thing you?ll buy here. When you get to this place you find out that the products we?re having are quite different from what you are having outside.
?There are people who travel out because of wares. That?s why we provide the market here for them to make it easy for them. When you are coming you just call that you are coming to buy something and you will be invited if you have been coming, you may not need to call.?
Proprietor of the clothing hall, who is simply known as Di Constantino, said he was happy with his clothing business which has become a career, having started from okrika as a little child. He said when others left for school he was going to Okrika to buy clothes for sale:
?That was how I started. I would be going to places to sell clothes. That was where I had the concept of making Di Constantino Clothing Hall today. This is my career. I travelled to Italy in June 3, 1989. I am based in Italy and Nigeria. I am doing both Nigerian and Italian fashion and it is an exclusive market, for the rich and middle class.?